The mechanical system involved in hearing is based on vibrations, pulses of vibrations that travel through the air and eventually reach our ears. We hear different sounds because of variations in the sound wave frequency.
The part of the ear that shows is the pinna, and it catchs the sound waves. Our pinnae face forward and stay put, but many mammals have movable pinnae that change direction and are more adept at focusing on sound.
As a result of aging, accident or abuse, the fine bones in the inner ear and the fluid-filled cochlear can become damaged, resulting in hearing loss. Problems with the inner ear often lead to balance issues.
While hearing issues have been long associated with aging, high volume music and the constant use of headphones or ear buds for loud music have increased hearing loss inyoung people.
In Maine, most hearing services are provided by audiologists or ear, nose and throat specialists. A Maine Licensed Hearing Instrument Dealer and Fitter also provides services and hearing aide assistance. Have your hearing checked if people say you yell, or that you ignore them or “forget things” frequently…perhaps you just didn’t know they were speaking!
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